Report names Newcastle £60,000-a-week second top earner, player can't even get in the team
By Harry Sykes
Newcastle’s second top earning player is fringe striker Aleksandar Mitrovic, according to a report.
This places the forward ahead of the likes of the Championship’s second leading scorer Dwight Gayle, defensive lynchpins Ciaran Clark and Jamaal Lascelles, and wingers Matt Ritchie and Yoan Gouffran.
Newcastle are paying Mitrovic Premier League wages after he signed on a five-year contract following his transfer from Anderlecht in the summer of 2015.
The Serbia international scored for his country in their 3-1 away win at Georgia on Friday but he has been unable to score as frequently in the Championship as had been expected.
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Mitrovic, 22, has had a frustrating campaign at Newcastle after being forced to play second fiddle to first-choice striker Gayle.
The £16million signing from Anderlecht has started just 12 matches in 2016-17, accumulating 23 appearances in all competitions.
He has responded with a creditable six goals but has scored only once for Newcastle since November.
Mitrovic has started a number of recent matches due to 21-goal Gayle suffering two different hamstring problems but manager Rafael Benitez has made it clear he regards the Serb as back-up.
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Newcastle remain on course for an instant return to the Premier League after consolidating their place at first in the Championship table with a haul of 78 points from 38 matches.
They are seven points clear of third-placed Huddersfield, who have a game in hand.
In other Newcastle transfer news, a deal is all but done for the club to transfer an in-form attacker.